In honor of Black History Month, the Dallas school district took about 5,700 students to see the War World II film Red Tails about the Tuskegee Airmen, but there was one problem: they left half of the students behind.

Apparently, district officials decided to treat all of the fifth grade boys to a field trip to see the inspirational film, but left all of the female students behind.

A teacher with the Dallas schools told the Dallas News blog that the trip only included boys because school officials felt “the boys would be interested in because it was about African-American men.”

But girls wouldn’t? Hmph.

In an email to the Dallas News Blog, district spokesman Jon Dahlander tried to explain the reasoning behind the boys-only field trip.

“Approximately 5,000 fifth grade boys in the district are watching Red Tails,” he wrote in the email. “The film is about the Tuskegee Airmen, a group of African American pilots whose acts of bravery during World War II earned them the President Unit Citation in honor of their achievements.

“There is only so much available space at the movie theater, so the decision was made for boys to attend the movie.”

While I’m sure the district could have worked out a schedule that would have allowed every fifth grade student to see the film, they didn’t even seem to consider it.

So what were the fifth grade girls doing while the boys were away enjoying the field trip? They stayed behind at school and watched the film “Akeelah and the Bee,” a film about a black middle school girl who wins the most prestigious spelling bee in the nation.

While I can appreciate the district’s willingness to inspire their male students, leaving out during a month geared toward celebrating equality seems just plain wrong.

What do you think? Was it unfair to not allow the girls to also see ‘Red Tails’? 


*Photo via the Dallas News

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